September 2, 2001
Strength, determination and inspiration come to us in different ways. When we climb or hike, the resiliency of the nature around us fills our hearts with peace. Sometimes special people possess that gift. This was the case during our 3900-ft. climb on Mt. McLoughlin.
Colleen Milliman climbed her first volcanic peak at 75 years young. She reached the 9595-ft. peak in five hours and ten minutes. Colleen was an inspiration to our team, as well as to the many others we met along the way. This gracious and vivacious woman won our hearts with her positive attitude and love of life.
Rather than tell you about the climb, here are comments by different individuals. These remarks tell the story from their hearts: “What a true inspiration”; “A most exuberant, glorious 360-degree view”; “Always nice to be on top!”; “Another pleasant hike in the woods”; “A fabulous day, great weather”; “The wind through the summit pines spoke like a church choir”; “My initiation to volcanoes”; “A bit closer to Heaven, spectacular view”; and, referring to wildflowers high on the mountain, “Life always finds a way”.
This truly was a memorable day for us. It was a joy and a privilege to witness the feat of a first-time climber at age 75. To share in the joy of a young man proposing to a young woman (she accepted). Paul#8217;s interviewing each of us for a CD of songs and tales of the Northwest. The freshly baked oatmeal chocolate chip cookies carried to the top by Wayne and shared with the group. To listen in on the interview of Colleen by the Forest Ranger; him telling his story. Mt. McLoughlin will always hold a special spot in our hearts.
First-time mountain climbers were member Patty MacAfee and soon-to-be-members Birgette Schmid (from Austria), Paul Keller and Colleen Milliman, and members Wayne Deeter, Greg Milliman, Jim Pierce (assistant leader) and Gerry Roe (leader).
— photos by: